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There are delays at the UK border due to a nationwide problem with e-gates at ports and airports, the Home Office has confirmed.

The technical problem caused electronic gates to stop working late on Friday, meaning all passengers have to be processed through staffed airport desks.

It comes as traffic builds on motorways and queues grow at Dover due to the bank holiday getaway.

Heathrow Airport said it was aware of the problem affecting its passengers.

The e-gates are operated by Border Force, the airport said, adding that the problem was widespread across airports and ports.

It said: “Our teams are working closely with Border Force to help resolve the problem as quickly as possible and we have additional colleagues on hand to manage queues and provide passenger welfare.

“We apologise for any impact this is having to passenger journeys.”

The Home Office also confirmed the delays for arrivals in the UK.

A spokesperson said: “We are aware of a nationwide border system issue affecting arrivals into the UK.

“We are working to resolve the issue as soon as possible and are liaising with port operators and airlines to minimise disruption for travellers.”

Travellers on the roads also face the prospect of long queues throughout the weekend.

Journeys on some stretches of the M25 could take up to three times longer than normal, transport data company Inrix has warned.

Long delays are also expected on the M5 in Somerset and the M6 in Cheshire and Greater Manchester.

Drivers across the UK are expected to make 19.2 million leisure car trips between Friday and Monday, according to estimates from the RAC, with the hottest day of the year so far forecast on Sunday.

Ferry passengers through Dover are being advised to allow two hours to complete border controls and check-in.

DFDS ferry company tweeted: “Please be prepared with refreshments & use facilities before arriving at the port.”

The Port of Dover said delays at French border control were due to “IT issues” with “high volumes of tourist and freight traffic on Port approaches”.

A traveller in the queue at Dover told Sky News they believed the “sticking point was French frontier control”.

“Once we got past that, inside Dover moved really well,” they added.

Traffic queues for ferries at the Port of Dover in Kent as the getaway for half term and the bank holiday weekend
The queues at Dover on Friday

The RAC said it was expecting the busiest weekend of traffic since before the pandemic.

“Getting away early in the morning or delaying trips until the evening are the best way to avoid the inevitable delays,” spokesman Rod Dennis said.

While holidaymakers face the prospect of long queues, those staying at home for the long weekend should enjoy some of the hottest weather of the year.

Southeast Wales and around the Bristol Channel will get the best of the weather, with temperatures up to 24C on Saturday and Sunday.

Other parts of the UK could see temperatures reaching the high teens and low 20s.

The dry and bright weather is likely to continue for most with little rain expected throughout next week during half term.

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King Charles shown chuckling at get well card featuring dog in a head cone




King Charles shown chuckling at get well card featuring dog in a head cone

The King has been shown having a chuckle at cards sent by well-wishers, including one of a dog with the caption “at least you don’t have to wear a cone!”.

The 75-year-old monarch has been sent around 7,000 messages of support from around the world since his cancer diagnosis.

Newly released images and footage show King Charles looking through some of them at his desk in Buckingham Palace’s Belgian Suite.

King Charles III reads cards and messages, sent by wellwishers following his cancer diagnosis.
The photos show the King in Buckingham Palace’s Belgian Suite. Pic: PA

He seemed particularly tickled by a card featuring an illustration of a terrier-like dog in a head cone, recovering from medical treatment.

Pets often wear plastic collars after an operation, to stop them aggravating a wound or stitches.

Other cards spread out in front of the King include one that reads “Your Majesty Get Well Soon”, while a number appear to be hand-drawn by children.

Many have related their own experience of cancer, with messages such as: “Chin up, chest out, remain positive and don’t let it get you down.”

More on Royal Family

“Never give up. Be brave. Don’t push your limits. Get Well Soon,” says one note from a child.

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Messages ‘reduced me to tears’

The King was pictured reading the cards on Wednesday – the same day he met the prime minister for their weekly audience.

He told Rishi Sunak that he’d been “reduced to tears” by the public’s support.

The monarch was speaking to Mr Sunak in their first face-to-face meeting since it was announced he had a “form of cancer”.

“I’ve had so many wonderful messages and cards, it has reduced me to tears most of the time,” King Charles told the prime minister.

He added: “I hear there has been a lot more potential attention on those main, wonderful cancer charities, many of which I have been a patron of for years.”

The King had been mostly staying at the Sandringham estate in Norfolk following his first round of treatment in London.

Buckingham Palace announced on 5 February that cancer had been discovered while undergoing a procedure for an enlarged prostate.

The Palace has not released details about the type of cancer or the treatment.

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Professional golfer Georgia Ball can ‘see the funny side’ after ‘mansplaining’ TikTok video goes viral




Professional golfer Georgia Ball can 'see the funny side' after 'mansplaining' TikTok video goes viral

Professional female golfer Georgia Ball has said she can “see the funny side” after a video of an amateur player “mansplaining” to her about her swing went viral.

Ball, a certified PGA pro and instructor, also told Sky Sports she did not put the man in his place during the “awkward” conversation because she is a “humble person”.

The TikTok video of the incident she shared earlier this week has had more than 10 million views and over 26,000 comments, with many social media users mocking the man for “mansplaining”.

In the clip, Ball, who regularly shares instructional videos on her account, is seen practising her swing at a driving range near Liverpool.

A man off camera then says: “Excuse me, what you’re doing there, you shouldn’t be doing that… swing and follow through.”

He goes on to tell her that she is “too slow on the way up”.

Ball explains she is going through a “swing change” – something golfers regularly do to improve their technique.

However, the man continues: “I know, but what you’re doing there is you’re coming back too slow.

“I’ve been playing golf for 20 years, what you need to do is follow through a lot quicker than what you’re doing there right now.”

She explains again that she is going through a swing change, but the man continues to advise that she needs to move her club quicker.

Ball then cleanly strikes the ball into the distance before the man says: “See how much better that was?”

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The professional golfer explains once again that she is practising a swing change, before the man repeats that he “has been playing for 20 years” and that she should carry on playing the way he has advised her to.

Ball then laughs, before sarcastically adding: “Thanks for your advice.”

Asked by Sky Sports how she felt during the interaction, Ball said: “It was an awkward conversation at the time but I was just concentrating on what I was doing… I am glad I can look back on it now and see the funny side to it.”

When asked if she was ever tempted to put the man in his place, she said: “To be honest, I am a humble person, it is not in me to call him out or say I am a PGA pro, it is just not in me to do that.”

Ball added that she never got the chance to see the man hit a ball, so was unable to pass comment on his swing.

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Scarlet Blake, who killed a cat and put animal in blender, found guilty of man’s murder




Scarlet Blake, who killed a cat and put animal in blender, found guilty of man's murder

A woman who filmed herself killing a cat before putting the animal in a blender has been found guilty of murdering a man four months later.

Warning: This story contains descriptions and an image that readers may find distressing

Scarlet Blake, 25, live-streamed the dissection of a family pet to New Order’s 1987 hit True Faith after watching a Netflix documentary called Don’t F*** With Cats.

In the programme, Luka Magnotta kills kittens before filming a murder while the same song plays in the background.

Prosecutors said Blake, who is transgender, had a “fixation with violence” and found Jorge Martin Carreno, 30, while searching the streets of Oxford looking for someone to kill in the early hours of 25 July 2021.

The body of the BMW factory worker, a Spanish national who was walking home alone after a night out with work colleagues, was found in the River Cherwell at Parson’s Pleasure around 24 hours later.

Oxford Crown Court heard a murder investigation was launched two years later when Blake’s former partner Ashlynn Bell, who lives in the US, told detectives Blake had confessed to killing Mr Martin Carreno using a homemade garrote.

Jorge Martin Carreno. Pic: Family handout
Jorge Martin Carreno. Pic: Family handout

Blake pleaded guilty to a charge of criminal damage over killing the cat but denied murdering Mr Martin Carreno by inflicting blows to his head before trying to strangle him and then putting him in the river where he drowned.

Four months before his death, she used food and a crate to capture a cat and take it to her home, where she killed it.

In the video, in which Blake dissects the animal, removing the fur and skin, she says: “Here we go my little friend. Oh boy, you smell like shit. I can’t wait to put through the blender.”

Prosecutors said it showed she had a “disturbing interest in what it would be like to harm a living creature”.

“It was an interest that went beyond mere fantasy,” Alison Morgan KC told jurors, who were also shown videos of Blake and a partner engaging in consensual strangulation with ligatures.

“She described herself to others as being someone who derived sexual gratification from the thought of violence and the thought of death,” said the prosecutor.

Blake filmed herself killing a cat. Pic: TVP
Blake filmed herself killing a cat. Pic: TVP

Blake killed a cat before putting it in a blender. Pic: TVP
Blake killed a cat before putting it in a blender. Pic: TVP

CCTV footage shows Mr Martin Carreno trying to find his way home, while Blake walked the streets, wearing a facemask and distinctive combat-style jacket with hood over her head, while carrying a rucksack.

“He died because he encountered the defendant on that night,” said Ms Morgan.

“He died because he met a person who had a fixation with violence and with knowing what it would feel like to kill someone.”

Blake, who was born in China and came to the UK aged nine, blamed Ms Bell for making her kill the cat.

She said Mr Martin Carreno was still alive when she left him at the riverbank and that she had made up details of killing him to please her ex-partner after seeing his death in the news.

“I told Ashlynn that I killed that person, I made up the details in a dramatic way,” she said.

“I told her I used a garrote that I made to try and remove the person’s head, but it was more difficult than I would have imagined and then I dumped the body in the river, which is what they are now pulling out.”

Scarlet Blake was said to have searched the streets of Oxford looking for a victim. Pic: TVP
Scarlet Blake was said to have searched the streets of Oxford looking for a victim. Pic: TVP

‘Full of passion and kindness’

Mr Martin Carreno’s family paid tribute to “an extraordinary being full of passion and kindness” who was one of three triplet brothers.

“Today, his absence leaves a deep wound in our hearts,” they said in a statement. “His life was stolen, cutting short his projects and dreams.”

“This tribute is a reminder of Jorge but also a call to justice. There can be no peace until justice is served. We ask not only for justice for him but also for protection to prevent other people, other families, from suffering the immense pain caused by such cruel and senseless murders.”

Thames Valley Police detective superintendent Jon Capps said several aspects of the case were “truly disturbing to see, hear and deal with”.

“This defendant showed calculated cruelty. The acts Blake has been convicted of are barbaric and chilling. The murder was premeditated with total disregard and disdain for life,” he added.

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